Dora Maar Seated

Pablo Picasso painted this in the same year as Guernica and the Weeping Woman series.

Dora Maar spent part of her childhood in Argentina. As a Spanish speaker she was intellectually more intimate with Picasso than previous lovers. They met in 1936 in surrealist circles in Paris. Maar was a surrealist photographer involved with the movement’s dissident faction led by Georges Bataille, who rejected the liberating power of eros, instead insisting on disintegration, sadism and death. The violence of Picasso’s art in the mid-1930s is close to Bataille. But Picasso and Maar found more urgent things to talk about than surrealism. Like the rest of the Left, their eyes were on Spain. Maar participated closely in Guernica. It was painted in a studio she had found in the Rue des Grands-Augustins; and she took photographs documenting its creation.

At the time Picasso made this portrait, he was also doing portraits of his fading passion, Marie-Thérèse Walter. In the images of both lovers, he experiments with a striking off-set profile in disjunctive, impossible combination with a frontal view: that is, the nose becomes an extension to the face on which the “far” eye is seen looking straight at us. It is the kind of leap of perception that caricaturists loved to parody in Picasso, and that enables his art to say two or 200 things at once, a freedom that has its origins in the cubist revolution he perpetrated with Braque before the first world war.

Here, the cubist leap of understanding is emotional, suggesting a profound sense of the frank presence of his lover. Maar looks right back at him, even though, with her head inclined to the right, this ought to be impossible. Her presence transcends the physical. It is, apart from the twisted profile, a classical pose, elegant and social. Her hand is on her right cheek, and it is one of the first appearances of the long red nails that Picasso was to use as visual shorthand for Maar.

Copy painted by: Derek Kosbab Original artist: Pablo Picasso

Title: Dora Maar Seated Title: Dora Maar Seated
Copy: Acrylic on canvas Original: Oil on canvas
Size of copy: 50m x 50m Size of Original: 43cm x 62cm
Date of copy: 2012 Date: 1937
$650.00 via PayPal SOLD


$650.00 via PayPal

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